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Monday, November 11, 2013
Tommy Smith optimistic Titans can regroup

By Paul Kuharsky

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Forty-five minutes before the Jacksonville Jaguars-Tennessee Titans game, the interview room across from the Titans' locker room was buzzing.

The members of the Adams family who’ve taken over control of the team since the death of Bud Adams was to be introduced, make some comments and take some questions.

Alas, an accident in the ingress to the game created major traffic and prevented an on-time arrival. The even was postponed.

As the game ended, CEO and team president Tommy Smith did talk to David Climer of The Tennessean.

“I want a tough, hard-nosed football team, and that’s what we’re going to get to,” Smith told Climer. “We’ve got a lot of work to do yet. … We want to build something that wins now and in the future. We want an identity that I think we’ve sort of been lacking.”

Identity talk.

More than midway into his third season, Mike Munchak is 19-22 as a head coach, and his new boss is posing the same question that has hovered over the team for his entire tenure.

Who are they?

How the Titans have been unable to form an identity over 41 games is a great mystery, particularly after a recommitment to the run game this offseason and the revisions of the roster and playbook intended to make it happen.

It’s just the right topic from Smith considering he just watched the Titans fail to run effectively against the NFL’s worst run defense.

Smith hit the default line owners offer about the future of their coaches, saying everything would be subject to review when the season was over.

“Jacksonville was going to beat somebody,” Smith said. “Unfortunately it was us. I’m optimistic [the Titans] can regroup. This just makes the next game that much more important.”

A loss Thursday night to the Colts would drop Tennessee to 4-6 and get the Titans close to the point where the next game starts to not be so important -- because the playoff chances would become so small.